Ragia Omran

At the height of the Arab Spring, when many wondered how the energy of the uprising could be harnessed to promote lasting political freedoms, Ragia Omran made a bold move. She co-founded the Almasry Alhurr Movement, calling for government accountability, social justice, and an end to emergency rule.

Through the Front to Defend Egypt Protestors, Omran and her colleagues have represented hundreds of civilians brought before military tribunals. She is also a leading member of Egypt’s cutting-edge legal advocacy organizations including the New Woman Foundation, which promotes reproductive rights and the political participation of women, and the No to Military Trials for Civilians Campaign.

This work is not new to Omran. She has been at the forefront of the human rights movement in Egypt for twenty years, notably as a member of the Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) Task Force which led a successful campaign to outlaw the practice in public hospitals in 1995.

In her courageous pursuit of human rights, she has survived arrest and assault. She continues to speak out against sexual harassment and helped form an “emergency chamber” of lawyers to work on behalf of any victims of sexual or political assaults during the Arab Spring protests.